food , harlem , New York , travel , travel stories , USA 8:32 am
Visiting Taiwan was familiar yet foreign. I recognized places from childhood, but a lot had changed. I was inspired to (re)learn about the people, nation, and my hometown in Taipei. There was so much hope and love (and delicious food), not to mention everywhere was clean, orderly, and convenient. We spent one week in Taipei and another week touring around the island. It was wonderful to show my husband where I grew up and eat our way around the country.
This time, Jiufen was packed with tourists from Hong Kong and China. We took a shuttle up the winding mountain and squeezed through the crowded and narrow alleys. After trying several street food stands, we escaped the crowds by visiting a cozy tea house overseeing the ocean. The staff taught us to make tea with their loose tea leaves and tea sets. Each tea set was hand-made by the owner, giving it a personality of its own.
We didn't have time to browse around the handmade tea set collections on the way out before venturing to our next destination. There are so many other tales, old and new, that I could share from each town in Taiwan. Each is as precious to me as that afternoon of delectable tea, snacks, and the ocean breeze in a small mining town north of Taipei.
Between traveling for work and traveling to see family, I love to spend any time off staying put in New York City. A night in at a downtown NYC hotel is my kryptonite - I even got engaged at The Standard in Chelsea. That’s why I jumped at the chance to try out one of New York’s latest luxury hotel: citizenM. The marketing copy on the hotel website set the bar high: a smart hotel with no tired old cliches.
I had walked by citizenM hotel many times and its edgy outdoor art pieces has always caught my eye. Once inside, it’s easy to see that the cool artful lobby gives the Ace Hotel a run for its money. The laidback livingroom vibe made me feel comfortable and settled no matter what I was wearing as I walked in. The lucky hotel guests access the rooftop bar with a lush green theme and busy midtown views. My friends and I took full advantage of the cloudbar - it’s rare to find a rooftop bar in New York where you don’t have to fight the crowd and noise. I can’t be the only one who loves to check out the fitness situation at my accommodation, and I was even pleased with the gym with its city-views.
Free wi-fi and Instagrammable decor, that’s how you run a hotel in 2015.